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“Her vision of the future created a uniformity of style, not only bringing an exploded, linear style to her proposed buildings, but also subsuming the surrounding landscape into this same lens, ofering a new vision of reality that was ﬁrmly planted in the future.” – Penny Craswell, Zaha Hadid’s built legacy
Image. Guangzhou Opera House by Zaha Hadid Architects. Photo Iwan Baan.
Architectural Review Asia Pacific June – July 2016
Deconstruct 015 In Conversation: The Future of Ageing Ian Nazareth 019 Emerging Conversations Amelyn Ng 026 Zaha Hadid’s Built Legacy Penny Craswell 080 Postview AR144 Jill Garner Spec Sheet 035 AWS, Brickworks, Corian, Axolotl, iGuzzini, Locker Group, Kartell by Laufen, ILVE, Shapeshift
Projects 043 122 Roseneath Street (Wulf Projects, Icon Co and Assemble) 052 Mary Place, All Hallows’ School (Wilson Architects) 060 Westpac Barangaroo (Geyer)
068 Medibank Place (HASSELL)
Cover Image: Zaha Hadid Architects’ Glasgow Riverside Museum of Transport, UK. Photo Hufton + Crow Photography. This page: Zaha Hadid Architects’ Messner Mountain Museum Corones, Italy. Photo Harald Wisthaler.
EDITORIAL ar145 Future
The last few weeks have passed in a blur since taking on the role of editor of AR, but two events stand out as clear catalysts for this, my first issue. The sudden passing of Zaha Hadid at the end of March was widely felt by the architecture and design community, and further afield. As online editor of Australian Design Review, there was little time for shock at the news before forming a response, reaching out to Hadid’s old friend, John Gollings, for his insight. This issue's Future theme then became the right forum for Penny Craswell’s survey of some of Hadid’s most impactful built works, as we wait to find out the fate of her many unfinished works. The very next week I found myself at the preview of The Pool, an immersive Australian exhibition featuring at the upcoming Venice Architecture Biennale. The project is by Aileen Sage Architects (Isabelle Aileen Toland and Amelia Sage Holliday) and urban strategist Michelle Tabet and has received nationwide support, with much made of the fact that young, female practitioners are leading the creative team. Huddled poolside in Fitzroy that night were some of Australia’s leading architects – the likes of Melissa Bright, Clare Cousins, Rachel Nolan and Victorian government architect, Jill Garner, who contributes Postview in this issue. There are yet many obstacles to achieving sustainable gender equity in this industry, but one hopes that the appointment of female architects in such highly visible positions continues and is indicative of a more balanced future for the profession – one I intend to represent in this publication. And so, we arrive at the theme – Future. The practice of architecture is necessarily future-focused. It speculates how we might live, posits the architects’ aspirations for society at large and creates a built canvas for the public to project their own futures. From global firms to small practices, architects the world over are researching, testing and hypothesising solutions for projects that will shape our cities for decades – perhaps centuries – to come. As society engages with mainstream representations of ‘good’ design and architecture, guided (or misguided) by rapid-fire renovations on ‘reality’ television, it is important that architects and designers continue to publicly advocate the elegant, considered solution, using their work to educate clients and end users on the long-term value of well-designed space. AR – Future features projects and articles that suggest new ways forward for multi-residential, public space, education and the workplace. It demonstrates how our workplaces aspire to encourage healthier lifestyles and how our built environment is developing to engage communities and support our active ageing population. A new section, Spec Sheet, features the products that emerge from collaboration between architects and engineers, catering to the architects’ afinity for materials that accommodate their pursuit of innovation and for the tools required to master their trade. We endeavour to open the conversation to diverse voices and stories – from independent local developers and emerging local talent to international ‘starchitects’, looking at smart interior spaces alongside sprawling landscapes. As the new editor of a new AR, I hope you will enjoy the pages to come. Sandra Tan Editor
Penny Craswell is a writer and communications specialist in design and architecture. She is a former editor of Artichoke and has held editorial positions at Indesign and Frame magazines. She is currently communications and business development manager of Bijl Architecture and is completing a Masters of Design (Honours). Her blog is www. thedesignwriter.com.au.
theory. Over a career of 30 years she has been a visible and active contributor to the discourse of architecture and a passionate advocate for design excellence. Ian Nazareth is an architect and urban researcher practising between Melbourne and Mumbai.
Jill Garner is the current Victorian Government Architect and co-founder of the multiple industry award-winning practice, Garner Davis Architects. She has taught at both RMIT and the University of Melbourne in design, contemporary history and architectural
Amelyn Ng is a design-focused researcher with a deep interest in civic agency and socially responsive infrastructures. She recently presented her speculative project on refugee housing at the AMPS housing conference in Nicosia, Cyprus 2016, which was exhibited in Melbourne and Madrid as part of Archiprix International 2015.
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Deconstruct hosts local emerging talent alongside the work of established architectural heavyweights, providing a diverse, open platform for thoughtprovoking discussion.
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IN CONVERSATION Ian Nazareth
THE FUTURE OF AGEING
Designing for an ageing population is synonymous with assisted living and retirement communities, models of isolation and dependency. The economic and financial implications aside, these environments perpetuate an array of particularly ominous conditions. While ageing is inevitable, there is some anxiety surrounding the mechanisms to manage an ageing demographic. This urgency springs from the unprecedented rate at which the global population is concurrently ageing and urbanising, crucial and inseparable interests. By 2020, over 50 percent of people aged 60 and over will live in an urban environment1, and by 2050 2.1 billion people (or 21.5 percent of the population) will be aged over 60, outnumbering those 15 and under2.The reciprocity between urbanisation and ageing will necessitate innovative approaches to models of housing, systems of the neighbourhood, transport, healthcare, amenity and the malleability of the urban fabric. With ageing as a keystone, can architecture and creative practices collectively intervene to reimagine the city and suburbia? Living with the elderly is not a particularly new subject but, rather, nuanced by diverse cultural attitudes and milieu. Asia and the Middle East, in particular, have a legacy of multigenerational models. In China, ‘ﬁlial piety’ – a virtue of care for elders – can be traced back to Confucius, and the design of traditional Indian courtyard houses were partly a consequence of the ethos of extended and joint families to support ageing relatives. The somewhat disparaging expression, granny ﬂat, and manifestations of neighbourhood houses, have a history in Australian domestic typologies. In Melbourne, Austin Maynard Architects’ Tower House (2014) sets a precedent for the investigation of the suburban dwelling as grounds for speculation and redeﬁning the relationship of the built environment with an ageing demographic. Ageing in place, multigenerational living and longevity are conspicuous paradigms observed within contemporary society. In Australia, merely six percent of the senior population opt for retirement living and ﬁve percent choose to reside in assisted living facilities3, extraordinary, when confronted by the hurried deployment of such institutions. The overwhelming majority choose to age in place, a phenomenon that viliﬁes the longstanding discourse of ageing. This could include living independently in private, family or rented homes, in localities they are acquainted with and lifestyles the residents are accustomed to. While such demands strain the existing building stock, new types are to be explored and tested. Whether detached dwelling, townhouse, apartment or otherwise, these homes will be ingrained with a sensibility of scale, selfdetermined living, adaptability and accessibility. How will such residential projects respond to growing families, or the downsizing of households? How could they advocate for public transport and personal mobility, and ensure access to amenity and service?
Along the banks of the Yarra River at Heidelberg, Melbournebased practice, ThomsonAdsett, has proposed a vibrant community, Streeton Park, comprising 85 independent living apartments with ﬂexible rooms, shared communal spaces and a wellness hub for residents. While it is located near public transport and the Heide Museum of Modern Art, the limited diversity of the project’s socioeconomics implies a singular narrative that does not stray too far from the traditional model of retirement villages. Proximity to public transport, amenity and open space, and access to medical and healthcare services are central to designing for demographic change. Smart cities and smart homes remain specious notions, but the convergence of information will transform the way in which we interact with domestic environments and future cities. The spatialisation of virtual systems means that the city can be better understood in real-time and be well-placed to anticipate and respond to emergency services, specialised healthcare and public transport – services that are crucial for an urban ageing population. As metropolitan regions grow or consolidate, new centralities emerge, seeking out more diverse reactions to people and place. Multigenerational living is a tactical response and one that resonates with a ﬁner grain of demographic inclusion. The internal complexity of a multigenerational program will be ampliﬁed when expressed over multiple urban sites and could reorient the hierarchies of the city. Lacaton Vassal’s Ourcq Jaures Student and Social Housing (2014) project in Paris integrates student dwellings with social dwellings and specialist care homes into a single building. While each typology is designed with the requirements of respective user groups in mind, residents have access to private outdoor spaces and a continuous balcony that uniﬁes the development. Through its materiality and ambition the project asserts an urban identity, but also sits within an extensive plan for the revitalisation and restructuring of the neighbourhood, through social integration. Lacaton Vassal has assembled a critical body of work focused on socially engaged housing transformations. In refurbishing 530 apartments in an archetypal 1960s tower in Bordeaux, interventions in structure, ﬂoor, circulation and façade suggest not only a precision in both analysing and retroﬁ tting the architectural frame, repositioning the building within the urban landscape, but also absorbing and advancing a new internal social dynamic. Ageing is clumsily equated with retirement; however, increased life expectancy and longevity that points to retirees and an ageing population remaining active in society, is perhaps the zeitgeist. Examples in Burbank, California by social entrepreneur Tim Carpenter (EngAGE) break with convention, reconsidering intergenerational living as centres of learning. Projects are →
IN CONVERSATION Ian Nazareth
→ modelled on college campuses, where the adjacency of advanced learning centres and access to educational facilities benefit residents and the community. Considering the constellation of urban and regional university campuses in Australia, could this be a possible model and plausible scenario for housing an ageing population? The intention is for cities to embody an alternative system of values for demographic transition that could be traced from low-density suburban developments through to dense urban conditions. The city block is a primary site for speculation that will collectively evolve to accommodate a matrix of residential typologies varying in size, but more specifically designed for a wider crosssection of the demographic: from advanced age groups with assisted care provisions, retirees and empty nesters, to young families and students. These projects will be interwoven with multi-modal public transport, a network of open spaces, recreational facilities, co-location of amenity and retail. Such precincts could fold onto a distributed system of healthcare and medical infrastructure. These ideas contest existing models that are less than expedient and in reshufling the density and intensity of existing programmatic briefs could potentially remap the DNA of the city. The 2016 International Architecture Exhibition (La Biennale di Venezia) directed by Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena, titled ‘Reporting from the Front’, surveys issues from segregation, housing, peripheries to migration and the participation of communities. It is mobilised by the recognition for architecture to provide a multidimensional response and the scrutiny of emerging ﬁelds of action for the discipline. Beyond disciplinary existentialism the future city requires a more comprehensive approach and sweeping changes in the conceptualisation and delivery of citywide policy frameworks and, eventually, a working model between and across the idiosyncrasies of respective city councils. The forecast for an ageing demographic and precognition of longevity will challenge the underlying assumptions about society, the capacity of architecture, and the agency of design of the city to suggest behaviour, acclimate to changeability and reconcile shifts. Should architects expect to be agents of and for change, it is essential to mount a challenge to the mythology of architectural method and urban policy process. The spatial agency for architecture will stimulate the harnessing, mining and manipulation of the future city to develop new taxonomies and typologies of urban prototypes. As a discipline we will be acting with an imperative towards hybridisation and transformation. The inquiry of design for age-friendly cities is, unmistakably, building more dynamic urban environments and facilitating resilient cities.
1 Source: UNFPA 2007 – State of World Population 2 HelpAge International, Global AgeWatch Index 2014, 2015 3 Australian Bureau of Statistics, The Architecture and Design Forecast 2016, Niche Media
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This series on emerging architecture graduates and professionals presents a diverse cross-section of young talent across Australia. While they don’t necessarily have it all figured out, these highly motivated individuals are featured for their exceptional passion to pursue their interests and create change. Amid the uncertainties and dificulties commonly faced by those new to the game, a new standard of proactivity is being set through self-motivated projects, practices, leadership and civic initiative. By sharing the insights, knowledge and experiences of those a little further ahead, Emerging Conversations aims to demystify the uncertainties surrounding postarchitecture school life and establish an accessible, heartening platform for recent graduates and students of architecture. Amelyn Ng speaks with four individuals making waves in Western Australia. Public Advocacy
Mimi Cho graduated in 2011. She is currently working at GHD Woodhead in view of registration, chair of the Australian Institute of Architects’ Emerging Architects and Graduates Network (EmAGN) WA Chapter, and curator of numerous public installations, including Urban Screening. Amelyn Ng Four years out from graduation and you have plenty on, from chairing EmAGN WA to exhibiting work and curating public events such as Urban Screening (which is playing before us as we speak). What drives you to go above and beyond the standard commitments of an architecture career?
Mimi Cho I like making things happen and I like ﬁnishing what I start. While I develop certain skills through architectural practice, I have found other avenues to develop additional layers of expertise and experience. EmAGN WA [formerly MERGE Emerging Architects] had a strong presence at my university through the Curtin Architecture Student Association and I was lucky to have friends who were always involved in extracurricular projects. As someone who wanted to be involved in the wider discourse, it was good to know EmAGN WA would be there when I graduated. I took my time treating myself to some travel and getting a job before feeling ready to get involved in EmAGN WA, which has since opened up opportunities for me to work with myriad [emerging] talent on creative public projects, such as the Urban Screening. AN How much has your university experience contributed to the things you are doing today, for example, your stop-motion ﬁlm at the Go Away and Come Back exhibition in Fremantle? MC Robyn Creagh, who was my ﬁfth year thesis supervisor, curated the exhibition. Upon graduation she sent me a Facebook request with a message saying, “You’re not my student anymore!” We’ve since stayed in touch, collaborating on a few creative projects… and so the dialogue continues. AN So those connections do last! Not many graduates realise how valuable these relationships are. I suppose it’s about looking beyond studio grades and academic references, and cultivating a genuine interest in the work and collaborative knowledge of peers, teachers and colleagues. MC That’s right. Robyn’s actually also involved in this year’s Urban Screening, which is a public video exhibition that presents the sometimes inaccessible ideas around architecture to the general public. The ﬁrst 019
Urban Screening took place at the Perth Cultural Centre during Architecture Week Western Australia 2014, then expanded to other Australian cities via EmAGN (Adelaide 9-12 October 2015, Brisbane 6 November 2015, Canberra 27 November 2015, and Melbourne 13 March 2016). AN There are so many diferent career choices out there post-graduation that it can be intimidating to know where to start. As a new graduate how did you make the next big step forward and know it was the right decision for you? MC I too felt this way at the time, nervous about getting a job at the ‘right’ ﬁrm. I found myself in a lucky position with two job ofers, two very diferent ofers! One was at a boutique residential practice of about six people, and the other was at a ﬁrm on St Georges Terrace with an ofice in every major capital city in the country. It was one of the toughest decisions of my life. I went with the ﬁrm on St Georges Terrace. As a people person I saw more opportunity to establish relationships with mentors and peers at this early stage of my career, some of my best friends today were/are colleagues. I also wanted to travel with work and was looking for work/life balance. If I do eventually decide to move to a smaller practice, I hope that option will still be there. At the end of the day I just had to know myself, and that’s important. You have to know your personality, what you can handle, what’ll make you happy and what you want out of a job. →
Emerging Conversations Amelyn Ng
Craig McCormack graduated in 2011 and is currently completing a PhD in space architecture, receiving the 2016 Fulbright Western Australia Postgraduate Scholarship (for research at the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture, University of Houston). He is director at felix and was co-curator of the Australian Pavilion, Venice Biennale 2014. AN From co-curating the Australian Pavilion at the 2014 Biennale, to delving into a PhD… what has been the driving force behind your architectural education and early career? Craig McCormack My driving force… ultimately employment, I suppose? (Laughs.) Until recently I suppose I have been a career student, as people often tell me. I studied music in London and arts at Curtin, yet I never really wanted to be a musician, nor an artist – I was simply interested in the subjects. During this time, I started seriously considering architecture. But I was always brought up to finish what you started, so I put in a few years to complete the first two degrees. When I finally entered architecture school, I thought I was going to be designing skyscrapers or designer dog kennels in Dubai... how quickly that changed! There is indeed a lot of hard work involved, but by then I’d developed the strong Irish, workingclass ethic of ‘chipping away at it’ from earlier study, which really helps in architecture. You’re either in it for the long haul or you’re not in it at all. The attrition
rate at the end of the undergraduate course was huge, but a good ‘get out of jail free’ clause for those less keen, or [looking] to move into another design avenue. For me it was the opposite – in second year it clicked. Once I started to realise what this big, messy melange of design could be, I embraced every aspect of it. And I am still enjoying being wrapped up in it immensely. AN Your work is about space architecture and delves beyond pragmatics into science fiction, narrative and speculation. What do you think is the value of academia and theory in the architecture sphere? Are there many Australian grads choosing this path? CM I think it’s extremely valuable. It’s having the freedom to think beyond the visual sense. There are a few graduates I know who have taken the academic route at UWA and various other universities. These people aren’t necessarily masquerading as an historian; they’re just more interested in chasing and developing ideas unencumbered by the weight of history or practice as such. At university I completed my dissertation at the same time as my design project; I didn’t feel it was an overload at all, rather a balanced approach to study for me. I designed a space station and used postcards to construct a narrative about an inhabitant sending messages back to Earth over a period of roughly 1000 years. This thesis project led into my PhD and now I’m known around here as the ‘space guy’. Some of my colleagues have questioned the validity and value of theory over architecture’s practical aspects. But it’s in paper architecture, where one can challenge, critique and make some ballsy statements, uninhibited by the pragmatics of building. One way or another, it always feeds back into design, so yes, I think that there is much value lurking in the academic shadows. 020
AN Any advice to graduates? CM My biggest advice would be to be active and involved with your local architectural community. Architecture is a part of the broader humanities – art, music and so on – so get out there and get connected with local life! There are so many events happening in Perth, from Open House to public talks… I would say get involved with all the extracurricular stuf before you leave university, so that you have a good idea of what’s out there and become part of a big support network. When I joined up with felix laboratories via a university colleague, we worked together on Unbuilt Perth, an augmented reality project featuring local building proposals that were never realised, but had fascinating socioeconomic or political stories behind them. When the time came around for expressions of interest in curating the 2014 Venice Biennale Australian Pavilion, we submitted the idea of an Unbuilt Australia and were selected! The Biennale was a fantastic experience and it all started by getting involved with others, cultivating ideas and being connected. →
01. One Hundred Year Starship under construction in Low Earth Orbit, 2011, drawing from Craig McCormack’s ﬁnal honours design project.
Emerging Conversations Amelyn Ng 01
Emerging Conversations Amelyn Ng
Robert Slavicek graduated in 2009 from University of Technology, Sydney. He became a registered architect in Vic 2012, WA 2014, SA 2015, and Building Work Supervisor Registration SA 2015. Slavicek has been an A+ Institute member since 2015, personally a member since 2005, and an ArchiTeam member since 2015. He started Slavicek Studio Architecture in 2013 and Slavicek Studio Photography in 2015. AN First of all, I’m curious as to why you hold licences in three states! What’s the incentive given you’re a sole practitioner based in Perth? Robert Slavicek Holding registrations in Vic, WA and SA keeps me plugged into what is happening in other parts of the country. Being a sole practitioner can really chew up your time and you can easily forget there is a world outside of your ofice! This is one way I force myself to stay in touch with other states and keep up with the latest conversation across the respective chapters... not to mention the possibility of procuring work interstate. AN What prompted you to take the leap and start your own practice? Or should I say, practices – you’ve since also started a photography practice. RS I had always wanted the challenge of acquiring and executing work while having a direct relationship with the client. The desire was always there, but the decision to take the plunge came when my former employer’s work dried up. It felt like a ‘now or never’ opportunity, so instead of looking
for another job I decided to be brave and create Slavicek Studio Architecture. The photography practice has evolved out of a long-term hobby that, like architecture, requires the trifecta of creativity, technical knowledge and an eye for detail. There is certainly more room for crossover between the disciplines. I hope to move from concerts and weddings into architectural photography. AN I’ve often wondered if it’s lonely working on your own, particularly as one starts out. Institute aside, how do you get support? RS I like to be involved with associations that support our industry. ArchiTeam is great for small practices that need to keep their overheads low – an advice hotline and community-based HR for architects, if you will. For me the Institute is the ‘face’, whereas ArchiTeam is the business support arm, both critical to the success of sole practitioners. Sometimes you do feel alone as a sole practitioner, it gives you conﬁdence to be part of a supportive team. We need to band together and such groups help reinforce the collective value of architects and how we go about our business. AN How would you advise ﬂedgling architects and practices on selecting projects and clients? Is it better to take on as many opportunities as possible for breadth of experience, or to be selective from the start? RS The temptation is to take on anything and everything when you are just starting out; however, I don’t feel this is the best way to go. It’s important to focus on one area of architecture, a niche if you will, develop your skills and prowess here instead of dabbling in a large array of projects. It enables you to build conﬁdence and produce quality work that, in the long run, helps you build your brand. It requires faith and patience, but I believe you should develop an area of expertise rather than take on every job out of fear or panic. 022
AN Perhaps some advice to graduates: do you think the size of a ﬁrm matters when getting graduate work experience? RS It is not the size of the ﬁrm that matters, but rather the type of work the ﬁrm procures and their attitude towards graduate mentorship. However, if I did have to make a choice, a small- to medium-sized practice would be the way to go. There are more opportunities to be involved not only in matters of design, but also in the ‘business’ side of things. AN What are your thoughts on ‘pigeonholing’ students and fresh graduates? It seems ironic that larger practices often don’t tap into these wells of creativity and untainted optimism, instead assigning graduates to, say, rendering and visualisation roles. So instead of emerging talent transforming the industry and its standard practices, they end up conforming to them. In your experience have you ever seen this ‘pigeonholing’ occur? RS Sadly, I have. People (read: egos) are scared of change so bringing in a young gun full of energy and excitement can be a daunting prospect to someone who is used to running the show. It’s also easy for graduates to get lost in the world of technical data and ‘standard’ methods, simply to meet client needs – or, worse, deadlines. We need to recognise their curiosity and enthusiasm, and embrace their questioning of methods that have fallen prey to established routine. However, pigeonholing remains an increasingly tortuous process; many graduates end up conforming to the typecast assigned to them for fear of prematurely compromising their career. Sometimes it is better to wait for the right position or to move on, rather than running the risk of being stiﬂed and losing the love for architecture.
Emerging Conversations Amelyn Ng
Emerging Conversations Amelyn Ng
Nic Brunsdon graduated in 2004 and is a registered architect running his own practice. He is director and founder of POSTArchitecture, Posit and Spacemarket. Plus he is WA Chapter Councillor RAIA 2015 and was awarded the National Emerging Architect Prize 2015. AN You have been making waves both locally and nationally through your recent work and have championed a new model of creative practice. What has been the driving force behind your architectural education and early career? Nic Brunsdon The frustration of seeing architects pushed to the periphery as a kind of façade-making, decorative role, rather than being integral to the realisation of built spaces and projects. A lot of it is our own fault. As architects we are the world’s great generalists and are therefore perfect to sit, lead, dream, direct, enact and procure this stuf. When architecture is done well, it doesn’t prioritise one thing over another, it’s a symphony. I’m driven to resist specialisation; I try to be really broad with my skill set. I even did a business course two years ago, so I could sit at that table and engage in those discussions. AN What do you think of the role of mentorship in architecture? NB Very important. We’ve recently had dealings with larger ﬁrms who have treated us terribly and tried to stomp us out of the process. At times like this you wonder, how big is big enough? I remember being told: when you reach a higher level make sure you send the elevator back down to bring the next generation up with you.
Maybe the solution is to create your own job, create your own future, your own possibilities. That’s why we have Posit, our research arm of 10 to 12 people, predominantly university students, who are thinking about what they want to do as they inch toward graduation. The idea was to help them direct their own path by providing space, experience and structure. But they bring their own ideas to the table. We’ve also got Nick, our 65-year-old architect builder and Emma, our business manager in her mid-30s. Our point is that it doesn’t work hierarchically; everyone has something to add, so you’ve got to tap knowledge from everywhere. AN Any advice to graduates? NB The world will change tomorrow if everyone stopped working for big ﬁrms. If everyone could just take ﬁve years from the day they graduate to really do the thing they’re passionate about, and it might mean having to forgo some money or getting a house straightaway, but I mean really chase hard the thing that you love, ﬁnd the area you can add a special skill, or make a diference in a problem you see in the world. This may not be traditional architecture as we know it, but the learning and training you get from an architecture degree makes you inherently prepared to tackle anything. That would be my advice. AN What is your biggest doubt/fear at this point (if any)? NB That’s really good, I don’t know. Haven’t thought about it, because if I did I might not do anything. I’m an endless optimist. Failure is feedback. So the worst that can happen is you get feedback. So set out to fail. What’s the worst that could happen? You fail, you learn, you go again.
02. (previous page) Project render courtesy Slavicek Studio Architecture
03. (previous page) Robert Slavicek courtesy Slavicek Studio
FEATURE Penny Craswell
ZAHA HADIDâ€™S BUILT LEGACY
FEATURE Penny Craswell
built work. However, soon after, the many competition entries, particularly for museums and cultural buildings, started to bear fruit. While the 1990s saw only a handful of larger built architectural works completed, in the 2000s, the ﬁrm launched at least a dozen, with this decade predicted to double that number.
On 31 March 2016, it was conﬁrmed that Zaha Hadid had died in a Miami hospital at the age of 65, leaving behind a signiﬁcant legacy of over 30 built architectural works, with another 36 projects currently under construction around the world. The outpouring of condolences and grief was led by both well-known architectural ﬁgures around the world, and public ﬁgures. Daniel Libeskind wrote: “Devastated by the loss of a great architect and colleague today. Her spirit will live on in her work and studio. Our hearts go out.” Hadid was signiﬁcant for many things, including being the ﬁrst woman to win the Pritzker Prize (2014) and the RIBA Royal Gold Medal (2016), and she was a symbol and role model for so many architects around the world. She was also famous for her loud personality, for being a ‘starchitect’ and for being caught up in various controversies, inﬂamed by the media. But I prefer to focus on her work and, in particular, on her built architectural work. Hadid started her practice in London in 1980 after completing her architectural studies at the Architectural Association in London, where she studied under Rem Koolhaas and Elia Zenghelis, her graduation project inspired by the Russian suprematism of Kazimir Malevich. Born in Baghdad, her cultural background combined with her interest in Russian constructivism and suprematism to inform her early architectural work – studying paintings that sought to reinvent architecture and the landscape through an exploded geometric expression. During the early years of her practice, Hadid rejected postmodernism’s pastiche of architectural styles, instead claiming that modernism was an unﬁnished project.1 Her vision of the future created a uniformity of style, not only bringing an exploded, linear style to her proposed buildings, but also subsuming the surrounding landscape into this same lens, ofering a new vision of reality that was ﬁrmly planted in the future. Probably her bestknown work from this time was a competition entry for The Peak (1982–83), a leisure club in Hong Kong, that seemed to cut through the mountainside with a series of distinctive horizontal layers and ﬂoating voids. Hadid wrote: “A suprematist geology (materials that are impacted vertically and horizontally) characterises this clif top resort… the architecture is like a knife slicing through the site, cutting through traditional principles of organisation and constructing new ones, defying nature and taking care not to destroy it.”2 Although Hadid won the competition, the project was never built (the developer went bankrupt) and this, along with many other projects, led to a reputation for Hadid as a “paper architect”, without
The museums For an architect whose buildings are so sculptural and can stand on their own as works of art, it is not surprising that Hadid’s architectural legacy is strongest in the museum sector. Her architectural style – all curves and angles, full of asymmetry and often without a clear front and back – suits the grand, monumental nature of museums, where architecture is often as much about making a dramatic statement as it is about presenting a collection. Contemporary artist and sculptor Anish Kapoor described her buildings as “habitable sculpture”.3 Her ﬁrst signiﬁcant museum is situated in the historic city of Rome, where the MAXXI Museum of XXI Century Arts (1998– 2009) provides a futuristic contrast, ﬁtting for a museum of 21st century art. The building is designed with a series of directional geometries derived from the urban grid of its surrounding context, with two main directional lines connected by a curve. This formalist approach – as evidenced in Hadid’s paintings of the building for the original competition – was reinterpreted in the built context as walls, beams, ribs, lights and stairs. The parallel lines of the building also deﬁne indoor as well as outdoor space, creating a porous building with a continuous sense of ﬂow, serving to draw visitors in and through the building. These curves and this ﬂow, originally drawn by hand, were developed using computers, with Hadid’s ofice one of the pioneers of 3D modelling technology. Practice director Patrik Schumacher took an active role as a proponent of parametricism, a term he coined in 2008, using algorithms and other computer programs to manipulate architecture and achieve new levels of structural complexity. Schumacher identiﬁes digital design tools as having an increasing inﬂuence over Zaha Hadid Architects, allowing the tendency towards complexity and ﬂuidity that was already manifest in the work to become a reality. “Hadid’s early elaborate techniques of projective distortion – deployed as a cohering device to gather a multitude of elements into one geometric force ﬁeld – were already setting the precedence of the current computer-based →
1 Mertins, D. (2006), ‘The Modernity of Zaha Hadid’, Zaha Hadid, Solomon R Guggenheim Foundation. http:// repository.upenn.edu/arch_papers/8 2 Hadid Z (2009), Zaha Hadid: Complete Works. Rizzoli: New York, p22 3 Kapoor, A. as quoted in StreetPorter, J. (2016) ‘My world is smaller without Ronnie Corbett and Zaha
02. Heydar Aliyev Centre. Photo Iwan Baan. 03. Heydar Aliyev Centre. Photo Hufton+Crow. 04. Glasgow Riverside Museum of Transport. Photo McAteer Photograph. 05. Glasgow Riverside Museum of Transport. Photo Hawkeye Aerial Photography.
Hadid’, The Independent, 2 April 2016.4 charleslandry.com/panel/ wp-content/uploads/2013/04/ Public-Art-Review.pdf 01. (previous page) Sinuous curves at ZHA’s Heydar Aliyev Centre continue throughout the building. Photo Hufton + Crow Photography.
06–07. Bold architecture at Guangzhou Opera House creates a dramatic backdrop for performances. Photo Iwan Baan. 08–10. The evolution of Zaha’s work on the MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts, from study painting to reality. Study painting by Zaha Hadid, photos Iwan Baan.
FEATURE Penny Craswell
FEATURE Penny Craswell
→ techniques of deformation and the modelling of fields by means of pseudo-gravitational forces.”4 Hadid’s other museums include the Glasgow Riverside Museum of Transport (2004–11), which connects the city to the River Clyde in Glasgow, and the Messner Mountain Museum Corones (2013–15), which is set into a mountainside at a ski resort in Italy’s northern alpine region. In both cases, the landscape was a signiﬁcant factor in the resulting built form. In the case of the Riverside Museum, the building is conceived as a long, tunnel-like shape – what Hadid referred to as a third metallic river – with openings to the city and to the river. On the city façade to the north, the rooﬂine is distinctive for its ﬁve peaked ridges, creating a jagged, wave-like, graphic efect. Inside the building is much more simple – one single volume in pistachio green running over 120 metres ofers exhibition space for the museum’s collection of transportation vehicles, including cars, bicycles, ship models, trams and locomotives. In Italy, the Messner Mountain Museum Corones almost seems to emerge from the mountain itself, with three large openings that create diferent vantage points of the limestone peaks of the Dolomites. In order to achieve this, Hadid’s design saw 4000 cubic metres of earth and rock excavated from the mountain, lending a sense of being embedded inside the mountain for museum visitors – appropriate for a museum on mountaineering – as well as providing a thermal beneﬁt. The three openings are in reinforced concrete poured in situ, with walls between 40 and 50 centimetres, while the roof is up to 70 centimetres thick, allowing the excavated rocks to be piled on top of the building. Performing arts buildings The most signiﬁcant of Hadid’s building designs for the performing arts include the Guangzhou Opera House (2003–10) and the Heydar Aliyev Centre (2007–12). Best experienced at night, the Guangzhou Opera House consists of two large sculptural forms, which Hadid’s ofice likens to pebbles in the river. Many have seen the opera house as an indication of what could have been, had Hadid’s design for the Cardif Bay Opera House been built – a project that became a political football and ended up being ditched in favour of a less radical design. Instead, Guangzhou was able to lay claim to being the ﬁrst city with a Zaha Hadid opera house. The structure consists of a concrete auditorium set within a granite and glass-clad steel frame, where the glazing exposes the steel frame – its efect is like a spider’s web or a prism of light. Inside, the foyers are ﬁlled with unusual twists and turns, and the auditorium, divorced from the rest of the building visually, presents an undulating caramel-contoured space set with twinkling spotlights above. In Baku, the Heydar Aliyev Centre is similarly sculptural. Here, the asymmetrical front façade contains several swooping curves in pure white. There is no distinction between walls and roof – all is one large sculptural element that seems dropped from above. Its singularity is achieved through its unbroken exterior skin, clad in glass-ﬁbre reinforced
concrete (GFRC) and glass-ﬁbre reinforced polyester (GFRP). The interior is almost spiritual in its white, curved beauty, creating capsule-like spaces, with neon strip lights that reinforce the sense that it has been carved by a sculptor. Both buildings serve as monumental symbols for the city – just as the museums have done – as well as interrogating and inspiring performing artists and their audiences to be as avant-garde as the building itself. Sport Hadid’s experience of designing sporting venues included the Bergisel Ski Jump in Austria (1999–2002) and the Tokyo New National Stadium project, which she ended up losing to Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, as well as one of her most famous projects, the London Aquatics Centre (2005–11). The exterior form of this series of three swimming pools consists of a podium element with a large overarching roof made of a structure of parabolic arches that deﬁne the form, but it is the inside of the building where the architecture truly shines. The ceiling is a ﬂuid form that seems to ﬂoat above the swimming pools like a wave, while side windows, without structural columns, provide uninterrupted views of the London skyline – a feat of engineering achieved via 3000 tonnes of steel in a dense network of trusses. Also signiﬁcant is the building’s ability to perform just as well as a public swimming pool for the people of East London now, as it did accommodating 15,000 extra seats in two large seating stands during the Olympics. Education and health Of her education and health projects, which include a contemporary addition to St Antony’s College at the University of Oxford (2013– 15), the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) School of Design (2007–14) and a Maggie’s Centre in Fife, Scotland (2001–06), Hadid was probably best-known for her Evelyn Grace Academy in London (2006–10). This school was part of a new Labour policy of statemaintained but independently run schools called academies, partly sponsored by businesses and benefactors. The building is divided into four small ‘schools’, helping the 1200 pupils to feel less like they are attending a giant institution. The form zigzags across the site, with irregular geometries manifested in bold diagonal lines. Playgrounds and sports zones ﬁll the gaps in between, including a bright red running track that the building straddles halfway. Here, as with the cultural and sporting buildings, the value of the architecture is, at least in part, symbolic. The principal of Evelyn Grace Academy, Peter Walker, told The Guardian that what the building does best is communicate to pupils that →
Schumacher P (2004), Digital Hadid. Springer Science and Business Media, p9 11. Messner Mountain Museum Corones, Italy.
FEATURE Penny Craswell
FEATURE Penny Craswell
→ “someone is valuing them”.5 Just like those East Londoners who are able to have swimming lessons in the magniﬁcent London Aquatics Centre or anyone visiting the museums or going to the opera, these pupils are growing up experiencing an architecture that is unusual, beautiful and ultimately uplifting. High-rise High-rise is another important sector for Hadid, even if the designs don’t look exactly like typical high-rises. Her Wangjing SOHO (2009–14) commercial and mixed-use towers are a series of three oval-shaped forms that she likens to mountain peaks, the tallest standing 200 metres high. Thin ﬂoor plates provide ﬂexible workplace interiors with plenty of natural light, while windows on each ﬂoor allow natural ventilation. The three towers are arranged set in a 60,000-square metre public park, providing popular outdoor areas for the community, while the buildings themselves seem to shift and change as you walk through the landscape, sometimes seeming to morph into one building and at other times separating into distinct forms. These high-rise buildings – as well as others that are designed but yet to be built – are also inspired by Hadid’s other commercial and residential work, including the BMW Central Building (2001–05) which, though it is a campus-style environment for a car manufacturer rather than a high-rise in the city, is also a workplace for a leading global company. Through these projects, it’s possible to see that Hadid knew workplaces – regardless of the shape of the building – and had already been working for many years on how architecture can respond to the interior requirements of commercial big business. Although I have focused on built work, it is important to note that three of Hadid’s high-rise building designs are planned for Australia. Grace on Coronation on the Brisbane River, the redevelopment of Mariner’s Cove in the Gold Coast and 582–606 Collins Street in Melbourne are in various stages of planning approval. It is hard to say whether Hadid’s death will afect the outcome of the buildings, although Hadid’s ofice has vowed to continue her work for years to come. Even though there are so many more buildings and there is still so much to say, it is appropriate to end this article with a comment on skyscrapers, since, while the practice of architecture is dominated by men in almost every sphere, the design of skyscrapers is one of the most exclusively masculine (despite the obvious phallic associations and jokes that could be made, this is more likely attributable to the fact that men tend to commission them – and make conservative choices). But, Hadid, who broke so many glass ceilings, managed to smash this one as well, simply making the point that: “I am sure that as a woman I can do a very good skyscraper.”
5 Moore R (2010), ‘Evelyn Grace Academy Brixton – Review’ in The Guardian, 17 October 2010.
12. MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts, Rome. Photo Iwan Baan.
Zaha Hadid is born in Baghdad, Iraq
Moves from Beirut to London to study at the Architectural Association School of Architecture
As a graduate architect, she joins Oﬃ ce for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA)
Establishes her own practice in London – Zaha Hadid Architects
1982 – 83
Wins design competition with her entry for The Peak Leisure Club, Hong Kong (unbuilt)
Vitra Fire Station is completed – Hadid’s ﬁrst realised project
Receives Pritzker Architecture Prize – the ﬁ rst female and ﬁrst Iraqi recipient of the prestigious award
Receives Honorary Doctorate, American University of Beirut; Honorary Doctorate, Yale University
Wins RIBA Stirling Prize for the MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts, Rome
Receives Honorary Doctorate, University of the Arts London Wins second RIBA Stirling Prize for the Evelyn Grace Academy, Brixton, London
Made Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE)
Receives Honorary Degree of Doctor of Literature, University of London
Receives 2016 RIBA Gold Medal Award – the ﬁrst female recipient Zaha Hadid dies in Miami, Florida, US
Spec sheet showcases the products that support creative expression and provide innovative functionality, to inform your next project.
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TERRAÇADE BY BRICKWORKS Terracotta is one of the world’s oldest building materials, used in ancient Chinese, Greek and Roman civilisations. Traditionally formed by rudimental production methods – handmoulded and baked in the sun – the material exudes an inherently warm, human quality. Today, terracotta is a precisely engineered material. Leading Australian manufacturer Brickworks has developed a range of Terracotta Façades – designed to weather external usage, and suitable for residential or commercial contexts. The next generation of Terraçade adds three ﬁnishes to the TN range– glazed custom colours, Sandblast and Watermark. In addition to the traditional Smooth tile, these ﬁnishes are designed for visual impact, rapid installation and durability. The striking colours and minimalist lines of the system lend themselves to bold, architectural statements. Terraçade also takes the form of TN 1200mm long tiles. The longer tiles utilise the same ﬁxing system as the 600mm tiles and can be installed in both stack and brick bond patterns. The two tile formats can be combined on the same wall, providing greater ﬂexibility when creating unique façade design solutions. Terracotta baguettes were developed by Terraçade, a privacy and ventilation system applicable to both practical and decorative building façades. It can be used to provide screening, permanent ventilation and shading or simply to add a stylish ﬁnish to any residential, commercial or industrial project. Terraçade baguettes come in a range of six natural colours designed to match with tiles from the existing Terraçade XP Smooth Range. Terraçade products feature a 20-year warranty on the system and a 100-year warranty on colourfastness and durability of the tiles. www. terracade.com.au
CORIAN CHARGING SURFACE Though wireless charge was first conceived and executed by Nikola Tesla in the 1890s, the supply of electricity in 2016 remains tangled and unwieldy. The paradox is that, while mobile phones and tablets support our portable modern lifestyles almost seamlessly, we still find ourselves bound to the physical power point – with the double plug outlet becoming a seemingly retro feature in the design of smart homes and responsive buildings. In an age of technological privilege, where access to Wi-Fi and Bluetooth is considered a basic right, it is a curious fact that the three-pin plug is still the norm. Currently, Qi and Duracell’s Powermat lead the market in wireless charge units for iPhone and Android systems. Significantly, Powermats are now being integrated into the customer experience at Starbucks in the US and UK. The global franchise changed the technological landscape by providing free Wi-Fi to customers from 2001, and this latest move similarly aims to standardise wireless charging through its stores worldwide. For architects and designers, the conversation turns towards shaping spaces for a wireless society. Solid surface manufacturer Corian recently launched a discreet under-mounted charge system to its ofering, which works in tandem with a corresponding receiver attached to the portable device. The transmitter is equipped with an app to monitor charge, and is programmed to stop when the device has reached maximum capacity. In a practical sense, the use of smart surfaces presents a simple way of streamlining and updating the spaces we design – since it is now possible to power almost any ﬂat surface, benches, seats and even ﬂoors can be rigged to provide charge. Looking ahead, there is signiﬁ cant potential for wireless charge technology to be applied creatively throughout our built environment, in hospitality, commercial, retail and residential contexts. Those that can provide continuous connectivity to the masses may hold the power in years to come. www. casf.com.au/corian-products/charging-surface
AXOLOTL TERRACOTTA The colour and texture of terracotta adds warmth and texture to the façade of the Nan Tien Institute and Cultural Centre near Wollongong, designed by Woods Bagot. The building is a tertiary educational facility and multicultural art gallery situated opposite the Nan Tien Temple and Pagoda, the largest Buddhist temple in the southern hemisphere. The architecture is spatially organised around four distinct ‘pods’ that contain teaching spaces, with internal and external social spaces situated in between. On the north-east and west façades, an undulating terracotta wave pattern has been used to link back to the roof of the Nan Tien Temple and Pagoda, ofering a sense of movement while providing environmental shading. The efect was created by a new innovation developed by cladding specialist group Axolotl. Axolotl Terracotta ofers the colour and texture of natural terracotta in a simpler, more cost-efective form. At Nan Tien, Axolotl Terracotta is applied as a coating to the aluminium blades, each of which is articulated around an axis and locked in place. Axolotl Terracotta can be used anywhere you normally use aluminium, CFC sheeting or stainless steel, in virtually any size or shape. As a coating, it’s easily integrated into architectural projects, as it can be bonded onto traditional building materials, standard shapes and forms. Apart from bonding to structural materials, Axolotl’s terracotta can be fabricated to suit a range of sizes and speciﬁcation, and the malleability of the material enables it to be etched and carved. www. axolotl.com.au
IGUZZINI – UNDERSCORE INOUT iGuzzini suggests new proposals in graphic lighting – an innovative use of light played on millimetric graphic signs that can emphasise the details, define the spaces, draw textures, give a mood or simply add a touch of colour with the RGB variations. A sign of continuity of the Underscore collection (a linear system of small dimensions of only 6mm to 16mm, which ofers light without interruption), the Underscore InOut version is a tool for creating with light that extends the brilliance of Underscore to exteriors, guaranteeing maximum reliability, even in extreme conditions. Light gives architecture a special rhythm, turning buildings into living organisms in a pulsating urban scene. Underscore InOut is a solution that liberates light and turns it into an artist’s brushstroke that outlines, highlights and even colours outdoor architecture with a palette of RGB tones. Façades of any size or shape become exquisite canvases, and special details and features communicate with light. www.iguzzini.com/underscore-inout
LOCKER GROUP In one of the latest Atmosphere installations, elements were retroﬁtted to St Columba’s College in Melbourne. Panels were installed in clusters, across two levels, providing solar shading to the ofices and classrooms. The versatility of the Atmosphere system provides ﬂuid design possibilities; panels can be grouped together or sporadically spaced across the façade. Each panel element has dual perforation proﬁles, a reduced open area on the top face, with a far more open lower face, ensuring clear vision from within and increased light ingress. Atmosphere provides a new aesthetic to the façade, equally applicable to new builds or retroﬁ ts. It is installed quickly due to the tensioned stainless steel cables. www.locker.com.au
KARTELL BY LAUFEN Kartell, the iconic Italian furniture brand, has partnered up with leading Swiss sanitary ware specialist Laufen, renowned for its innovation and expertise in high-end ceramics and tap ware, to create a complete bathroom project: Kartell by Laufen. Designed by Ludovica + Roberto Palomba, the new tap ware collection combines innovation and technology with a series of translucent accessories. The Kartell by Laufen Disc collection includes the exquisite Disc mixer, which features a disc that sits atop the tap and doubles as a shelf for storing accessories. This unique design is available in three options, including a Disc Basin Mixer, Disc Extended Basin Mixer and Disc Bath Column with a Hand Shower. The Kartell by Laufen tap ware collection is available through Reece from May 2016. www.kartellbylaufen.com
ILVE They say the kitchen is the heart of the home and, with Ilve’s new colour concept, customers can truly make it their own using the latest technology from RAL colours. Used by architects and designers throughout the world, it is the leading instrument for choosing individual colour designs. Whether it’s a zesty bright lemon or an autumnal warm berry, Ilve now has a range of ovens to ﬁt any kitchen colour scheme and the pairing process is extremely easy. Simply visit the experts at an Ilve showroom, who can talk you through close to 2000 samples found on the RAL colour charts. www.Ilve.com.au
SHAPESHIFT ShapeShell has become the first composite cladding material to gain AS:5113-2016 fire certification. This not only provides architects with absolute confi dence and certainty when specifying ShapeShell for external cladding applications, it also opens up a whole new world of design flexibility. ShapeShell is available in a range of finishes and its monocoque construction means it can be formed to the most extraordinary shapes without afecting its structural integrity or light weight. You can view video evidence of ShapeShell’s Fire Certiﬁcation at: www. shapeshell.com.au/videos
THE MODERN FLOORING MOVEMENT IN WORKPLACE DESIGN Ofice environments are places for thought, discussion and creativity, and choosing the right flooring finish is key to creating a space that’s comfortable, inspiring and practical. Driven by trends for flexible and activity-based settings in workplace design, architects, designers and facility managers are looking to luxury vinyl flooring (LVT) in place of traditional carpet tile and laminate for its durability, ease of maintenance and endless design capabilities. It allows specifiers to achieve the desired look with wood and stone efect planks and tiles, yet still maintain the fundamental properties of acoustic practicality and life cycle sustainability. Responding to the movement towards open plan interiors, Karndean Designflooring’s award winning LooseLay wood and stone is proving a hit with architects and designers when paired with its acoustic properties and quick installation. Ofering an acoustically sound and comfortable work space that is quieter to walk on, its unique wave backing has an embedded acoustic layer which reduces noise transmission and bounce. Taylor Construction Group Pty Ltd recently created a new state-of-the-art ofice facility at the Macquarie University Australian Hearing Hub, using Karndean LooseLay to zone of diferent work spaces while retaining its open plan design brief. “The acoustic properties of Karndean LooseLay was a key factor in the architect’s selection. Across a multilevel building, LooseLay was a quiet alternative to a hard flooring surface,” commented Ben Cauchi, project coordinator at Taylor Construction Group Pty Ltd. “In a design process, there can be changes at short notice. Karndean LooseLay was a great solution for us. It was quick to install and allowed us to get the job completed to our agreed program.”
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The featured projects are unique in scale and purpose, but are united by a considered, human-scaled focus, designed to improve the spaces we inhabit.
122 ROSENEATH STREET 01
Wulf Projects, Icon Co and Assemble Location: Melbourne, Australia
The future of multi-residential development is locally focused and socially sustainable. It is moving away from the short-sighted investment and planning that has led to a proliferation of unresponsive and uninspired volume real estate – maximising tenants and thus profit per square metre. Slowly, through the success of collective initiatives like The Commons and its upcoming sister project, Nightingale, the conversation is turning towards building quality in Melbourne. With collective experience of successful high-density living gleaned from time spent in Europe, and an intimate knowledge of the area, 122 Roseneath Street presents a shift in the role of the architect as developer. The Assemble team currently works from the site that will, subject to approval, demonstrate how apartment living can foster an engaged community. Architecture statement 122 Roseneath Street is a collaborative project between Wulf Projects, Icon Co and Assemble. We share a belief in small footprint living. Living small is not just about size; it’s a way of life that treads lightly on the planet and fosters community, helping our city grow more sustainably.
Nestled in a leafy pocket of Clifton Hill in Melbourne’s inner north, the project is located on a large mixed-use site with northern frontage onto Roseneath Street. Flanked by a mix of commercial and residential buildings, the current site is home to a large warehouse and brutaliststyle ofice building. The proposed design consists of three main forms that run north–south along the site, with a single-storey podium providing a sensitive retail streetscape interface. The podium gives way to threeand four-storey townhouse buildings on both sides and a stepped six-storey apartment building in the centre. The highly articulated sculptural building recedes back into the site as it rises, resulting in highly recessive upper forms. Subtle references to the existing brutalist building and tactile material of the local area are carried through the design, while existing building elements have been retained in the podium. The ground level interface includes retail and café tenancies, while the strategic placement of services and car park entry maximises the active frontage along →
01. Native ﬂora will be planted to encourage fauna from the nearby Merri Creek corridor. Artist’s impression courtesy Assemble.
02. (overleaf) An elevated platform intends to create a sense of transition and privacy from street level.
122 ROSENEATH STREET
122 ROSENEATH STREET
→ Roseneath Street. Street level improvements further help to create a sensitive interface between retail and the pedestrian streetscape – these include the sculptural concrete balconies and generous setbacks at the ground floor, creating an open undercover pedestrian space. Two generous communal linear parks intercept the three forms. Through the use of native landscaping we hope to encourage visitors from the Merri Creek wildlife corridor. The proposed building is a highly site-responsive design, with a strong sustainability, quality and community focus. The design is driven by fundamental principles, including a strong emphasis on internal amenity, privacy, light and air access, equitable views lines and communal facilities. Diversity of apartment types ofers future owners and occupiers a wider variety of lifestyle options, catering to diverse community needs. The diverse housing options include studio, one-, two- and
three-bedroom apartments, and two-, three- and four-bedroom townhouses. With thoughtful integration of communal spaces, we’ve designed a place where collective culture can thrive, where neighbours are encouraged to interact in and through what is shared – all the while having a sense of ownership of personal space. Shared spaces include a communal room with adjoining north-facing terrace and a multipurpose workshop for all the messy jobs you don’t want to do in your apartment or townhouse, such as ﬁ xing your bike, washing your dog or building a piece of furniture. Creating a culture of living closer together relies on a human-centred design process. We believe the best ideas and most meaningful solutions come from understanding our community’s needs, hopes and dreams for the future. This means engaging with prospective residents regularly, and early on, and adopting a → 0 49
03. 122 Roseneath’s two open thoroughfares, with town houses either side of the central apartment block, are designed to encourage a sense of community within.
122 ROSENEATH STREET
→ consultative approach with neighbours and local councils. We met with local residents and the City of Yarra well before we submitted a town planning application for 122 Roseneath Street. The design has also been shaped according to feedback shared by potential residents throughout the design presentations, including the function of the communal spaces, car parking assignment, interior design options, bathroom and laundry configuration, pet-friendly owners’ corporation rules and sustainability features, such as operable external shutters to control the amount of heat and glare from the sun and an embedded energy network powered by 100 percent renewable energy. We’ve also worked hard to provide meaningful choice in relation to the apartment and townhouse interiors, where residents are given the opportunity to choose the size, fitout and features of their home.
04. Assemble director Ben Keck gives an information session at the warehouse site in Clifton Hill. Photo Tom Ross.
DEVELOPERS Wulf Projects, Icon Co and Assemble / ARCHITECT Assemble / PLANNING TRACT Consulting / LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT MALA / STRUCTURAL ENGINEER WSP / BUILDING SERVICES ADP Consulting / FIRE ENGINEER Exova / ESD Ark Resources / ACOUSTIC ENGINEER Acoustic Consulting Australia / BUILDING SURVEYOR Reddo / ACCESSIBILITY B4Compliance / QUANTITY SURVEYOR Napier & Blakeley 051
MARY PLACE, ALL HALLOWSâ€™ SCHOOL
MARY PLACE, ALL HALLOWS’ SCHOOL 02
Wilson Architects Location: Brisbane, Australia Photography: Christopher Frederick Jones The future of school design is tiered, urban and engaged. High-rise schools are a fact of life in dense Asian city centres and the concept is starting to take hold here. Just this year, the NSW Government revealed Grimshaw and BVN’s design of the state’s first high-rise school, while St George’s Anglican Grammar School in Perth moved into a five-storey office building. All Hallows’ School is a metropolitan Catholic girls’ school, positioned at the southern fringe of Fortitude Valley, where the city meets Brisbane River. Across the road stands a cluster of skyscrapers, including the Soleil building – Brisbane’s tallest, before being surpassed by the Inﬁnity Tower in 2013. In such proximity to this vertiginous scale, Wilson Architects has formed a forward-thinking place to support learning within a city context, projecting the shape of things to come in Australian education. 01. (previous page) The dominant element of the upper level sunshade screen uses a mix of colours ﬁne-tuned to highlight the original buildings. 02. A porous metal skin enables a screened outlook to the city surrounds.
Architecture statement Great schools and universities are deﬁned by the strength and expertise of their communities, together with their ability to provide students with ﬂexible and interesting ways to learn. This environment has created new challenges that are driving school design today.
In a rapidly changing world, education institutions must respond to the way technology is impacting the design of learning spaces. Content is no longer solely driving design; rather, a diverse range of teaching practices (pedagogies) require highly adaptable, ﬂexible and agile spaces. Older schools can struggle to meet this change, with classrooms too small, inadequate natural light, Heritage building restrictions or adhoc growth resulting in fragmentation of the institution and disconnected facilities, weakening the sense of community. All Hallows’ School is both blessed with its heritage, but also challenged. The school is one of the oldest in Brisbane. It has undergone incremental and continual growth over time, as the city around it has also drastically changed. What was once the front door to Ivory Street is now a tunnel and what was the backside of the school, now fronts the city. Mary Place, a new ﬁve-storey general classroom building had to negotiate a complex Heritage context and dificult site constraints, while improving overall connectivity into the campus, including new student access from Kemp Place. The rear campus entry has been transformed to reﬂect All Hallows’ School’s contemporary teaching values, while respecting the scale and historic legacy of the school. Context The existing heritage school buildings have façades that respond to its →
MARY PLACE, ALL HALLOWS’ SCHOOL
→ hierarchical relationship. The south ﬂank that addressed the old school is ornate, the western ﬂank that addressed the convent is pared back and the northern façade, the back door, is purely pragmatic. Mary Place sets up an overt dialogue within this Heritage context, with various Heritage façade details referenced and reinterpreted. The new envelope responds to each of its elevations with a rotational tectonic, as if part of each façade has been pulled around and connected to the next. Taking reference from the garden and building screens used in the past by the nuns to deal with privacy, security and shade, a number of new elements play with transparency to present mass, scale, texture or acuity. The street composition is rescaled from a ﬁve-storey building into a two-storey object, ﬂoating over a two-storey high planted screen. The western façade
responds to the scale of the 1940 University Wing and composes an elevation of lightly suspended aluminum screening, similar to the famous Queensland Thurlow verandah blind, which references the adjacent 1892 convent’s heavily screened façade. Where Mary Place engages directly with the rear façade of the 1940 University Wing, the view of the original façade is theatrically edited. Rather than reveal the whole of this mundane but important façade, the building instead frames only a fragment with a proscenium arch, placing it as a backdrop to the daily play of student interaction in the courtyard and the verandah galleries of Mary Place. The arch’s head conceals the old roof while reﬂecting winter sun. The sheltered courtyard brings daylight deep into the plan and reinvigorates a previously neglected part of the school. 057
Flexibility The planning of the building recognises both teacher-led and student-directed learning spaces. The ground ﬂoor enables students to break out of class or gather over recess in a place that encourages interaction and informal learning. This ﬂoor also supports functions and events, where the classrooms can be interconnected and seamlessly ﬂow into the outdoor room. Natural light The traditional classroom, where the teacher stands at one end of →
03 – 04. Open inward-facing balconies establish a dialogue with the courtyard below.
â†’ the room, has been reimagined. The two end walls are floor-to-ceiling glass and the long walls are covered in whiteboards for both teachers and students to explore and present content. Lockers have been moved away from the corridor, which frees up circulation, but more importantly enables higher levels of natural light and ventilation into the classroom.
05. The new volume references the proportions of the Heritage building adjacent.
PROJECT MANAGER CPM (Australia) / ARCHITECTURE Wilson Architects / SURVEYOR Michael Jolly Surveys / TOWN PLANNING Craven Ovenden / LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT Wilson Landscape Architects / HERITAGE ENGINEER Michael Kennedy Architect / STRUCTURAL AND CIVIL ENGINEER Cardno / HYDRAULIC ENGINEER H Design Pty Ltd / MECHANICAL, ELECTRICAL, ACOUSTIC, LIFT ENGINEER Arup / FIRE ENGINEER Omnii / TRAFFIC ENGINEER Holland Trafic Consulting / QUANTITY SURVEYOR Steele Wrobel / CERTIFICATION McCarthy Consulting / CONSTRUCTION Badge Pty Ltd 05 8
MARY PLACE, ALL HALLOWSâ€™ SCHOOL
WESTPAC BARANGAROO 03
Geyer Location: Sydney, Australia Photography: Richard Glover
Workplaces of the future will be measured in well-being as much as productivity. Being ideally positioned to invest in optimal working environs, Australia’s major banks continue to spur innovative solutions, from inviting and functional interiors through to highly engaging surrounds. At the corporate level, office design has evolved beyond activity-based working to cater to an adaptable, health-conscious workforce cognisant of the importance of a sustainable work/life balance. As a result, blue chip workplaces – once sterile and siloed – have become tactile and comfortable, including private spaces and easy access to green space. Geyer’s work for Westpac at Barangaroo demonstrates how design can aid and educate businesses in extracting value and beneﬁt from the spaces they inhabit. Architecture statement Design firm Geyer has been instrumental in the creation of Westpac’s agile working principles, WorkSMART and the physical application to its 60,000-square metre anchor tenancy at Tower Two, Barangaroo (the first of the three International Towers Sydney – ITS), in collaboration with Lendlease.
Geyer is a strategic design firm that has a long history supporting the evolution of Westpac’s business, most recently at Melbourne Westpac workplace at 150 Collins Street and Westpac Place in Sydney. Geyer was initially appointed to work with the Westpac Group in the review of negotiations associated with the Barangaroo anchor tenancy, assist with the negotiation of the Agreement for Lease and engage with RSH Architects in relation to the ongoing development of the building specifications to best support the Westpac business for the next 20 years. Geyer was engaged to complete a time utilisation study to determine the level of agile working that would be appropriate for Westpac to adopt, given the nature of work within the building. Underpinning this study was Westpac’s WorkSMART strategy that will see Westpac transition to agile working across all locations in the future. From this study, Geyer and Westpac deployed a pilot that tested the recommended level of agile working. The pilot has been a key tool in the change management strategy for the adoption of WorkSMART. The resulting design solution by Geyer focused on intuitive space planning based on natural human behaviours. The workplace solution places significant focus on space that creates a sense of belonging, happiness and wellbeing. These elements are the cornerstone 0 61
of the design. A sense of belonging, for example, is encouraged via assigned neighbourhoods, accommodating team and individual activities. Geyer has been collaborating with ergonomist, David Caple, and the Westpac OHS team, with the design approach encouraging physical movement that reduces sedentary work-related injuries. The movement of people in turn activates incidental collaborations and connections beyond the immediate team. From a client perspective, Westpac’s environment at Barangaroo includes 8000 square metres of visitor space over five floors and provides a diverse hospitality suite to enable the tailoring of dynamic customer experiences. An immersive and flexible technology overlay is utilised to specifically brand the experience as and when required. The Barangaroo tenancy is currently targeting a six-star accreditation via the newly developed Green Star Pilot Tool. Geyer is currently working with the Green Building Council to help refine and modify this tool.
01. High impact passageways combine with more intimate spaces at Westpac at Barangaroo.
02 – 03. (overleaf) Glazed stairwells and balconies create lines of sight across multiple levels within the interior volume
Level Twentyeight Level Three
Level Fifteen 0
INTERIOR DESIGN FITOUT Geyer / PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND DELIVERY: Lendlease / MECHANICAL, ELECTRICAL ENGINEER AND SECURITY Norman Disney & Young / ACOUSTIC ENGINEER Norman Disney & Young, Acoustic Logic / AV CONSULTANT Audio Systems Logic / LIGHTING DESIGN Point of View / STRUCTURAL ENGINEER Lendlease / LANDSCAPE design Aspect / GRAPHICS Frost / BCA / CERTIFICATION McKenzie Group Consultancy / DDA CONSULTANCY Morris Goding Access Consultancy / ERGONOMIST David Caple & Associates / FIRE ENGINEERING Deﬁre / HYDRAULICS Warren Smith & Partners / KITCHEN Cini Little / QUANTITY SURVEYOR WT Partnership / WORKPLACE STRATEGY Lendlease / INTERNAL STAIR Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners 0 65
04. An informal breakout space takes advantage of prime harbourside views. Overleaf: 05. A tough contemporary material palette of concrete and
travertine tiles (Artedomus) is met with soft blond timber. 06 – 07. The interior ﬁtout adds a sense of community and warmth to the corporate environment.
MEDIBANK PLACE 04
HASSELL Location: Melbourne, Australia Photography: Peter Bennetts / Earl Carter
The future of public space is playful. Dealing on a large scale, the art of landscape architecture is to resist the bird’s-eye approach. Access and ﬂow are a primary concern, which make functional thoroughfares of open space – structures formed to manage traffic rather than speak to the individual. Where urban design truly prospers is in the places in which we are encouraged to pause, sit and interact. With green spaces bound by timber seats and decking, and stepped topographical structures, HASSELL’s Medibank landscape brings an organic textural diversity to an area laden with concrete. It offers respite from the offices, makes a destination out of a hitherto neglected precinct and contributes immensely to the quality of the awardwinning buildings it meets. Landscape architecture statement As we continue to build bigger, denser cities, how do we provide green spaces to support our growing population? On the southern edge of Docklands stadium, Medibank Place and the NAB building illustrate the value of large commercial developments in providing opportunities to repair the urban fabric and the role of landscape architects in integrating vibrant, connected and green public spaces that improve our life in the city.
“These projects demonstrate an exciting shift toward creative, interdisciplinary approaches to designing great places that serve a multitude of uses,” says Matt Mackay, senior associate at HASSELL. Repairing and reconnecting Docklands’ urban fabric HASSELL has been involved in the development since the South East Stadium Precinct Master Plan, designing Medibank Place, as well as the landscape and public spaces of the neighbouring NAB building at 700 Bourke Street (Woods Bagot). The success of these projects is in early planning and an integrated design approach. “As the landscape architect throughout the project’s development – from precinct master plan to completion – we’ve been able to create a far better public experience in a part of the CBD that was previously accused of being lifeless and lacking identity,” says Mackay. The existing concourse was narrowed (from 22 to 13 metres wide) to become a livelier, pedestrian-friendly street with cafés, shops and lobbies along both sides and weather protection from the clear canopy overhead. Stair and laneway-style →
01. Medibank Place oﬀers a sense of respite within a public space.
→ connections cut through both Medibank Place and the NAB building to provide the ground plane permeability. A living, breathing workplace building transforms its surrounds The new workplace for Australia’s largest health insurer, located at 720 Bourke Street, was inspired by its purpose: to create better health for members and employees. The design is focused on giving back to the community, through the incorporation of an urban park, interior planting, façade greening and green walls. All opportunities were taken to fill spaces with green life and improve the health and well-being of the workforce. The Medibank Place podium has been designed as a ‘park’, with a series of connections back to the concourse. The city
end of the park is lush and green with lounging lawns, shade trees and informal timber terraces. At the west we engage the stadium, providing a large timber amphitheatre addressing the sports arena and a multipurpose sports court for the Medibank workforce. Integrated design creates sustainable workplaces and cities In NAB Docklands, a series of green spaces were inserted along the eastern edge of the building, taking advantage of the natural light from over the railyards and views back toward Melbourne’s CBD. On the ground floor a densely planted indoor area provides an informal meeting and flexible working space. Further up the building a childcare centre, with partial natural ventilation, 070
occupies a generous double-height volume, bringing a jungle of play, plants, soil and sand up into the third floor of the building. On the top floor, a large roof terrace spills out from the communal dining area to take in stunning views of the city. Here, a sweeping timber deck and amphitheatre sit above a native grassland roof, providing for social events and an alternative to airconditioned working. The integrated design approach allowed the landscape architects to be engaged very early in the building design process, which has led to ambitious explorations and hybridisations of both landscape and architecture at Medibank Place and NAB.
(Above) Visualising the urban face of Medibank, as it appears at street level. Drawing courtesy HASSELL.
02. HASSELLâ€™s large-scale green strategy incorporates an important corner for play.
MEDIBANK PLACE LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE, URBAN DESIGN, INTERIOR DESIGN HASSELL / INTERIOR DESIGN COLLABORATORS Chris Connell Design, Kerry Phelan Design Ofice, Russell & George / FACADE GREENING AND GREEN WALLS Fytogreen / PROJECT MANAGER Project Planning & Management / TOWN PLANNER JH Town Planning / STRUCTURAL AND CIVIL ENGINEER Winward Structures / ESD AND SERVICES ENGINEER WSP / BUILDING SURVEYOR AND ACCESS CONSULTANT One Group / BUILDER AND CONSTRUCTION MANAGER Brookﬁeld Multiplex / LANDSCAPE CONTRACTOR Baron Forge NAB BUILDING LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT, URBAN DESIGN HASSELL / ARCHITECT Woods Bagot
03 – 04. Stepped elements invite people to sit and enjoy the urban environment. Overleaf: 05. Moments in the landscape capitalise on the unique aspect towards Melbourne’s CBD. 06. The landscape brings human-centred design to a high-traﬃ c area.
Section (above) a NAB retail tenancy b Dining terrace c Concourse d Medibank Place retail tenancy e Medibank Place park f Bourke Street below
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POSTVIEW Jill Garner
POSTVIEW ar144 Sky high
In looking at the challenges and directions of 21st century high-rise living, guest editors Penny Craswell and Peter Salhani have found an architectural typology in a state of transformation. Suggesting our east coast cities have become a ‘battleground for new models of urbanisation’, the editors examine six feature projects, located in a sweeping line from Shanghai through Singapore to Sydney and Melbourne. Through four key lenses – liveability, sustainability, civic presence and amenity – the guest editors consider the worth of these examples of high-rise occupation. Reminding us of the birth of the tall building through visions for the future, celebration of achievements in engineering and the possibilities in architectural systems, the guest editors remind and encourage us to find time, in a rapidly populating world, to learn from the past to ensure meaningful contemporary legacy. Dr Kate Shaw’s commentary highlights the difering legislative, political, regulatory and business landscapes out of which alternate typologies emerge, calling for a national urban policy that identiﬁes an intelligent and thoroughly integrated direction for housing, jobs, transport, environment, culture and recreation. Although they share an essential commitment to envision a high-rise future for our growing population, the six case study projects demonstrate distinctly diferent philosophies. The guest editors’ key lenses encourage interrogation of the underlying question of whether each project is aiming simply to house a population within the conﬁnes of its site (‘a tool to battle sprawl’) or whether there is real consideration given to designing a new and engaging type of neighbourhood (acknowledging diversity, environmental impact, quality, amenity) networked into a greater civic realm. The guest editors suggest that each case study contributes to its streetscape, the skyline and its occupants in a considered way, and that each contributes to the evolving ambition of the contemporary high-rise. But going back to the underlying philosophy of each project, the case studies seem easily separated into contrasting ambitions. Several of the projects ﬁt into the category of ‘buildings that breathe’. WOHA’s Skyville @ Dawson demonstrates a strong link between project ambition and outcome, with its campus model clearly articulating the architect’s three themes of variety, sustainability and community. Although both dense and high-rise, the design is porous in its scattered occupation, its physical form and its landscape context. Koichi Takada Architects' Inﬁnity by Crown Group in Sydney has emerged out of a thorough and site-speciﬁc contextual analysis, resulting in a form sculpted out of local conditions rather than a program squeezing into a form. With regard to amenity, human scale and an overlay of →
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POSTVIEW Jill Garner
→ landscape and civic connections, this high-density neighbourhood is given breathing space. The concept of stacked communities (as seen in the WOHA project) is also evident in 3XN/BVN’s Quay Quarter Tower in Sydney. The three-dimensional articulation of solids and voids provides diversity in architectural experience. This building is not constrained by its site – it too maintains breathing space, which must translate into amenity for its resident communities. In contrast, the two Melbourne projects, Elenberg Fraser/Disegno’s Abode318 and Fender Katsalidis’ Australia 108 feel constrained by their sites and by the ambition of their yield. Abode318, with its organisation of internal resident activities through social media, suggests a community content to incubate itself from the city in which it sits. Australia 108 is a clear celebration of the architect’s statement that “conquering height is irresistible, intoxicating”. Reflecting the roots of the tall building in technological challenge and considered essentially within the confines of the sites, it is dificult to suggest these projects acknowledge the contemporary questions associated with higher density homes for a community anxious about the type. These designs perhaps rely on occupation by the already converted. With clear celebration of technology, integrated engineering and architectural design, Gensler’s Shanghai Tower proposes an elegant signal of its position as the second tallest building in the world. The building vertically recasts a Shanghai typology that blurs public and private space; however, in its mix of diverse commercial and short-term residential tenants, the challenges of designing a new type of vertical neighbourhood are not entirely within its frame of reference. The guest editors of AR144 Sky High have drawn together important contributions that address, examine and expose a dilemma facing many of the world’s magnetic cities – how to house a rapidly growing population in a way that does not impact detrimentally on what initially made that place magnetic. We are reminded that the best cities in the world are busy, economically thriving, healthy, loved by their citizens, great to live in, work in and to visit. We are reminded too that change in our built environment should never be dictated purely by economics, but should always be overlaid by considerations that extend to social and environmental beneﬁt. Sitting as we are on the cusp of signiﬁcant change, it seems that wisdom, vision and a shift – in policy and attitude – is critical to ensure high-rise neighbourhoods can be sustainable, afordable, decent places to live.
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